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Re: [Semantic_Web] Ontology Vs Semantic Networks

From: Simon Margulies <simon.margulies@unibas.ch>
Date: Wed, 30 May 2007 18:24:25 +0200
Message-Id: <6C8942C1-05B3-45EC-9516-26C4D6B9AB02@unibas.ch>
Cc: semantic_web@googlegroups.com, SW-forum <semantic-web@w3.org>
To: Danny Ayers <danny.ayers@gmail.com>
thanks a lot for this post!

I'm writing about ontologies as historical resources, which could be  
researched by future historians. In other words, what historians need  
to know about ontology concepts, to be able to analyze a preserved  
ontology to conclude some information about the past.

So far I understand ontologies (in computer science) as having  
emerged out of earlier approaches for knowledge based systems like  
semantic networks or framebased languages by defining not only the  
syntax (like semantic networks or framebased languages) but adding  
explicit formal semantics in form of description logic. Thereby it  
gets possible, that several independent systems can share one  
ontology whereas in the former to this could be a problem.

As an information source I can recommend:
- Ulrich Reimer: Einführung in die Wissensrepräsentation. Netzartige  
und schema-basierte Repräsentationsformate. Stuttgart 1991.
- Baader, F.: Calvanese, D; et al. The Description Logic Handbook.  
Cambridge 2003.
(both in German..)

Being historian writing about concepts in computer science, I  
struggle often with not-precise and not-consistently used definitions  
in that field.. I consider such exchanges most valuable and would be  
happy about any corrections!


On 29.05.2007, at 10:14, Danny Ayers wrote:

> [cc'ing semantic-web@w3.org]
> On 28/05/07, james.jim.taylor@gmail.com  
> <james.jim.taylor@gmail.com> wrote:
>> How can we distinguish between ontologies and semantic networks, and
>> in what respects are they similar.
>> I would appreciate any comments or references explaining that.
> Mmm, homework...
> Broadly speaking any graph-shaped knowledge representation (including
> e.g. OWL ontologies, RDF data) could be described as semantic
> networks. But if memory serves, historically semantic networks tended
> to lack logical formalism, more along the lines of mindmaps - a
> precursor to things like RDF/OWL.
> John Sowa has a survey at:
> http://www.jfsowa.com/pubs/semnet.htm
> Cheers,
> Danny.
> -- 
> http://dannyayers.com

Simon Margulies, lic. phil. hist.
University of Basel
Imaging & Media Lab
+41 61 267 04 88

Received on Wednesday, 30 May 2007 16:24:44 UTC

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